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University Life

Employer Relations & Recruiting Team

The Employer Relations & Recruiting team is here to support employers throughout all aspects of the recruiting process, whether virtually or in person.  We are proud of our strong employer partnerships and look forward to working with your organization to customize a recruiting plan that meets your needs! 

Employers and students can contact our team by emailing or by calling 781.891.3423.

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Jennifer Thibodeau
Senior Associate Director, Employer Relations & Recruiting

Jen Thibodeau is Senior Associate Director of Employer Relations & Recruiting in the Pulsifer Career Development Center and has more than 25 years of experience in employer relations for higher education. She manages the campus recruiting programs for all internship and full-time employers. Thibodeau oversees the entire operation of the Employer Relations & Recruiting Office and manages Bentley University’s two annual career fairs which host 140+ employers and 1200+ students at each fair.  She served as a functional lead for Bentley’s long-awaited Handshake CRM system implementation.  She is responsible for the data reporting for all recruiting related rankings surveys.

Thibodeau has developed strong relationships with employers and is able to share key facts and trends regarding campus recruiting to augment their networking and recruiting efforts. Her work with diverse companies across many industries, and extensive knowledge of employer relations, allow her to deliver excellent knowledge and service to all employers. Thibodeau and her team strive to maintain Bentley’s well known reputation for maintaining a “top notch” recruiting program and providing exceptional service to all employers.  Jen has a Bachelor of Science in Leadership Essentials from Southern New Hampshire University.

Fun fact: I love the beach!

Favorite part of the office: How supportive this entire team is of each other





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Kara Buonopane
Senior Assistant Director, Employer Relations & Recruiting

Kara Buonopane is the Senior Assistant Director of Employer Relations and Recruiting in the Pulsifer Career Development Center at Bentley University. Her background in both higher education and corporate recruiting allows for a dynamic understanding of employer engagement. She works with the rest of the ERR team on both on- and off-campus recruiting programs, the two annual career fairs, and other employer events. In this role, she also works directly with the Handshake platform. Her primary focus lies within corporate outreach and new employer strategy.

Throughout Kara’s career, she has strived to create an inclusive and equitable environment for everyone that she works with. She prioritizes teamwork and encourages everyone to bring their strengths and ideas to the table.

When Kara is not working, you can find her exploring the great outdoors with her husband and her dog, Dot, or snuggling up with a good book and her cat, Blue.


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Jessica Smith
Assistant Director, Employer Relations & Recruiting

Jessica Smith is the Assistant Director of Employer Relations & Recruiting in the Pulsifer Career Development Center and has more than 10 years of experience in higher education in  Career Services, and Residence Life. She helps manage all aspects of companies hiring Bentley students for jobs and internships and provides exceptional customer service by managing employer events for Bentley’s key corporate partners who are seeking to hire Bentley students. Jessica acts as the first point of contact for a large number of corporate and recruiting partners. She also assists on-campus recruiting efforts and the management of Bentley University’s two annual career fairs which host 140+ employers and 1200+ students at each fair.  Jessica handles the logistics and promotions for events of key corporate partners held both on and off campus. 

Prior to working at Bentley, Jessica has worked at Brandeis University, Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI), and as a Graduate Assistant at Becker College and College of the Holy Cross. She has a Bachelor of Arts from Framingham State University and a Master of Education from Springfield College. 

Through her career, Jessica has found her strengths lie in project development, program planning, and facilitation. She is very passionate about the combination of career development, employer relations, event facilitation, and oversight of management systems like Handshake and Brazen.